Spouses complain endlessly about in-laws, but not even divorce will end these gripes. Once your marriage ends, you may encounter a whole host of unexpected in-law issues, as outlined below:

Losing Your Second Family

If you were lucky, you enjoyed a strong relationship with your in-laws while married. You felt like accepted, or, perhaps, secretly preferred your in-laws to your own family. Now, members of that second family feel conflicted. You may see previously friendly in-laws displaying unexpected vitriol. In this way, your romantic split could spell the loss of several valued relationships. Unfortunately, there is little you can do beyond remaining cordial.

Pitting Your Children Against You

If your former in-laws spend extensive time with their grandchildren, watch out: their resentment could alter how your kids think about or act around you. Don’t return the favor by talking smack about your ex-in-laws while your kids are around; this is your opportunity to teach a lesson about taking the high road. If your former in-laws’ efforts infringe on your parental rights or visitation time, seek support from an attorney.

Encouraging a Contentious Divorce

Perhaps you and your ex prefer to resolve your differences through mediation—too bad your former in-laws don’t feel the same way. Vengeful relatives may encourage your ex to seek a more adversarial approach than originally intended. They may convince your ex that agreed-upon alimony or child support levels are unfair—or that your ex deserves a greater share of divided property. No matter which divorce approach you end up pursuing, your attorney can help you prepare for and navigate the process to achieve a desirable outcome.

Your approach to divorce could determine how much your former in-laws interfere with your new life. The Brown Law Offices can help you every step of the way, so don’t hesitate to get in touch.

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Photo of Cynthia Brown Cynthia Brown

Cynthia Brown is a founding partner with the Brown Law Offices, P.A. She is an honors graduate of the University of South Dakota and William Mitchell College of Law. Cynthia was admitted to practice in 1998.

After graduating from law school, Cynthia served…

Cynthia Brown is a founding partner with the Brown Law Offices, P.A. She is an honors graduate of the University of South Dakota and William Mitchell College of Law. Cynthia was admitted to practice in 1998.

After graduating from law school, Cynthia served as the law clerk to the Honorable Timothy R. Bloomquist, retired Chief Judge of Minnesota’s Tenth Judicial District. Upon completing her clerkship, Cynthia practiced with a well-known firm in Cambridge, Minnesota. She founded the Brown Law Offices, P.A. in 2003.

Cynthia has handled a wide variety of family law matters throughout the Twin Cities, and greater Minnesota, including divorce, custody, child protective services, orders for protection and harassment restraining orders. Many of her clients have also asked her to provide guidance concerning their estate planning needs.

Early in her career, Cynthia served as a prosecutor, public defender and criminal investigator. In addition to her family practice, Cynthia routinely represents clients facing criminal charges such as DWI, assault, theft and criminal sexual misconduct.

Cynthia founded the Amigos de Guatemala Foundation in 2007. She is a former Board Member and President of the Foundation, which provided educational, health and financial resources to underprivileged Guatemalan citizens. Her interest in serving the impoverished began with a medical mission trip to Honduras in 1994.

When she is not practicing law, Cynthia enjoys scrap-booking, soap-making, ATV riding and spending time with family.


Areas of Practice
  • Divorce
  • Custody
  • Child Protective Services
  • Restraining Orders
  • Criminal Defense
  • Estate Planning
Bar Admission
  • Minnesota State Bar, 1998
Education
  • William Mitchell College of Law, 1998
  • University of South Dakota, 1995
Joined Firm
  • 2003
Professional Associations & Activities
  • Minnesota State Bar Association
  • Presenter, Various CLE Courses
  • Panel Attorney, Anoka County County Family Law Clinic
  • Monthly Columnist, Minnesota Lawyer Newspaper
  • Author, Family Law Forum
  • Author, Divorce Magazine